This section is from the book "The Gardener V1", by William Thomson. Also available from Amazon: The New Organic Grower: A Master's Manual of Tools and Techniques for the Home and Market Gardener.
For many months past this independent visit of the Royal Horticultural Society to the province of Nottingham had been earnestly and anxiously talked of, written about, and arranged for. The marked success, financially, of this first visit, without being tacked on to the Royal Agricultural Society, will surely fully justify the soundness of the judgment of those who chiefly promoted it; for, looked at from a pecuniary point of view, this meeting has been the most successful of any yet held in the provinces. Considered as an exhibition of plants and fruits and vegetables, there is also reason for satisfaction and congratulation; unless, indeed, it be in the case of the fruit exhibition as a whole, for, with the exception of a few Pines, a few bunches of Grapes, and a dish or two of Peaches and Nectarines, the fruit was inferior. This, however, can in part be attributed to the extreme coldness of the season. Of course, among such a vast assemblage of plants it cannot be said that all were good. The great bulk were, however, fine.
The general effect produced in so large a tent we thought might have been better, and the squinting position in which many of the specimens were placed, suggested the idea as if a hurricane had swept through the tent and laid prostrate many of the plants.
The assemblage of visitors was great, and such as might have been expected during such fine weather; but the arrangements, at least the first day, for viewing the plants and fruit, were bad in the extreme, inasmuch as the visitors were allowed to wander in contrary streams in all directions, which, in so large a show, or indeed any show, should never be allowed. We do not know whether this was allowed on the other days, but the first day was rendered irksome and unpleasant to visitors who wanted to inspect the plants and fruits. Our space forbids our giving a general or full report of so gigantic a show, especially as we are monthly reporting on similar plants at the Metropolitan Meeting. We would suggest that the Royal Horticultural Society should, by way of variety, hold a great international fruit-show in August or September of some future year, at some central and populous town or district, say at Manchester, or, more central still, York. One becomes so intimately acquainted with the very same plants or style of plants year after year, that any real interest in them becomes cloyed; and a great fruit-show we think well worthy the attention and patronage of the Royal Horticultural Society of England. Surely if in Edinburgh a great fruit-show can be made to pay with liberal prizes, there can be no fear of success at some central point in England.